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by Acclaim

set212-01.jpg (4637 bytes)I didn’t sleep well last night. I went to bed with an overwhelming sense of dread, and I tossed and turned all through the wee hours. You see, I had played a little of Jeremy McGrath Supercross World last night. I had played the game enough to know that I never wanted to play it again; however, I didn’t play it enough to be able to give it a fair review. All night I kept thinking, ‘I don’t want to play anymore. Please, don’t make me,’ but I had no choice. So, I awoke this morning groggy and a little down. I dutifully put the game back in the Gamecube and played it as long as I humanly could (which still probably wasn’t long enough). If I haven’t made it clear yet, this is a bad game. I’m usually a little more eloquent when it comes to tearing apart a video game, but my brain is so numb from playing that I can only seem to conjure up the words—game bad, game very very bad. I think I need to get up, walk around and clear my head a little before coming back to harp on what exactly is wrong with the game.

set216-01.jpg (4719 bytes)(After banging his head gently against a wall to get the mental cogs turning again, Jason returns to his computer to rail against one of the worst games he has ever played.) One of the things that makes this game so bad is to see all of the squandered potential. The folks over at Acclaim had obviously spent a fair bit of money to secure one of the hottest figures in the Supercross world. They also had at their disposal one of the most powerful gaming systems ever created. It’s not that it’s such a terribly bad game; it’s just that Jeremy McGrath Supercross World could have been so much better. Nothing bothers me so much as squandered potential. When I think of all the people involved in the production of this game, I have to believe that at least one person stood up and said, "You do realize that this game sucks." I have to believe that someone was honest enough to say that or my whole faith in humanity would be seriously altered.

set207-01.jpg (6337 bytes)I have to admit that I’ve gotten spoiled by next generation gaming. Games like SSX have conditioned me to expect little details like when I crash in some snow the powder should look white. When I don’t see those details, I can only assume that there’s something wrong with the game. The Jeremy McGrath controls are awkward at best. It seems impossible to approach this game with a light touch. Again, the analog controller has made me expect a little bit of finesse in my video gaming controls. Such finesse is not to be found here. Supercross World has its share of game play options. There’s a two-player mode if you want to inflict this on a good friend, and there’s the obligatory championship circuit or individual track mode. There are a good number of tracks throughout the game, but they’re so similar that they really don’t make a difference.

set206-01.jpg (6425 bytes)I haven’t seen the Gamecube this underutilized since, well the last game I reviewed (see my review of American Pro Trucker for details). Jeremy McGrath looks like a very polished Psone title. The game’s physics are so irrational and annoying that the game feels more like Pac Man or Tron where 90 degree turns are perfectly natural. The only thing that didn’t bother me about Supercross World was the sound and music. Not that it was particularly good; it just didn’t stand out as being all that horrible.

set205-01.jpg (7140 bytes)I hate to see a system become a dumping ground for crappy games, but that’s exactly what’s happening. Publishers who didn’t maximize their return on half completed Dreamcast games are flocking to Gamecube in droves. The cross platform mentality has people designing games that will work fairly well on all systems instead of tailoring games to the strength of a particular system. It’s like all those Hollywood executives trying to make a movie with the broadest amount of appeal whatever the cost to the integrity of the film. As long as gaming continues to be so controlled by marketing and cost effectiveness it will never rise to the art form that it’s capable of being. I know I’m ranting, but there are so many problems with Jeremy McGrath Supercross World that are simply symptomatic of an industry wide disease.

set209-01.jpg (8301 bytes)One of the guys I work with at my day job was writhing with jealousy over the fact that I got to review Jeremy McGrath Supercross World. He’s into the whole dirtbike thing in real life and wanted to live and breathe it even when he was off his bike. Playing Supercross World has placed upon my shoulders a responsibility that I refuse to take lightly:  I must go seek him out, and with every resource at my disposal, I must keep him from playing this game at all cost. I have to cut this review short because I have a friend who is very much in need, and time is of the essence.

Jason Frank   (05/13/2002)


Ups: Decent soundtrack.

Downs: Bad control; bad graphics; not at all fun to play.

Platform: Gamecube